New Comelec commissioner says appointment not a reward

By Sheila Crisostomo, The Philippine Star

Posted at Jul 29 2014 03:01 AM | Updated as of Jul 29 2014 11:01 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Newly installed Commission on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Arthur Lim yesterday brushed aside insinuations that his new post is a reward for his role in the impeachment trial against former chief justice Renato Corona.

In a press briefing, Lim said two years have passed since the trial, so he thinks it is not a prize but an opportunity for him to serve the public.

“I would say it’s payback time for me because if not for government scholarship, as well as for the love and sacrifices of my late father, I would not have been a lawyer today,” said Lim, who was introduced to the employees by Comelec Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. during the flag-raising ceremony yesterday.

Lim replaced former Comelec commissioner Grace Padaca whose interim appointment was not renewed by President Aquino when it expired last June 11.

He will continue her unfinished term until Feb. 2, 2018.

According to Lim, he has been in the private sector for 44 years and this is the first time that he will be in public service full time.

"I am very thankful that in the twilight of my life, by God’s Grace and while I still have the strength, I can return to the government a little of what it has given to me,” he said.

“I will really serve faithfully and sincerely. I won’t promise anything. Time will tell,” said Lim, a former president of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines.

People’s protégé

When asked by reporters, Lim admitted that he knows Senate President Franklin Drilon, a stalwart of the administration-backed Liberal Party.

He, however, assured the public that he will not be influenced by anyone. “I would like to emphasize that I’m a protégé of no one, no party, no politician. I’m a protégé only of the people. I don’t deny that I know Senator Drilon but I will be loyal to the people,” he said. – With Raymund Catindig